Saturday 13 April 2024

UPDATE - 4+ Marsh Harriers, Pied Flycatcher etc

Nearly half a year since I posted. Wow. A lot has happened in this time, and I have no idea why I'm still often getting 1000+ blog views daily given that there's nothing new! So, the last 6 ish months:

- My main camera failed (a disturbingly common fault that should probably be a recall, or at least a free repair, but alas, these companies rarely do the right thing...).
- Viral photo of the ISS with the moon, seen by over 8 million people. Deluded flat-earth morons helped me here!
- Worst Winter for clear skies that I can remember. East Devon hasn't had a clear, moonless night since 2022 (yes, 2022) whereas Scotland and South East England have had 20-50 in the same time frame. Madness.
- More trouble with incompetence in our health service where I've had to effectively handhold them to get their jobs done properly (I cannot emphasise enough how frustrating this is when it's regarding your 2 (now 3) year old child).
- Waxwings not quite on patch.
- Baikal Teal and a STONKING male Hen Harrier during a rare off-patch venture into Somerset.
- Tough slog with patch birding. 4+ Marsh Harriers, Pied Flycatcher being my patch highlights. I've spent a huge amount of time looking at gulls when I've been out, with the most interesting ones 'only' being Meds. 
- Superb views of a couple of Sandwich Terns lingering around BHM.
- Avocets!

So, the patch harriers. We've had 2 lingerers, one of which is still here. I also had an additional 2 birds fly over in one afternoon. I had the impression at the time that these were new birds, as they were high, and carried on SW. Sure enough pics confirmed these were 'new' birds and they weren't seen again. Here are pics of the 4 which are obviously different, but there may well have been more as these were just me. The top bird is the one that's still here:

Now, come on Spring. Give us something properly good. And for goodness sake, some clear skies!